Like no one over 60 need bother? Is that the message? Ladies, we are just getting to the good part at 60! Phooey on those teenage copywriters!!
Our three daughters and yours truly nearly drove Mr. Wonderful completely bonkers with the line item "Health & Beauty Aids." You name it - we tried it. Thus, a vast storehouse of knowledge. And we will share.
30's: You need to moisturize now. A light product is plenty. More importantly, clean your face every single night. This gets harder when kids come along, but that strained carrot mask will not do your complexion any favors - trust me.
40's: Get serious, girlfriend. Try a couple of brands. That includes freebie samples that come your way. The creepy we-know-all-about-you marketers (think of them as "personal shoppers") will supply you with appropriate products. Got my first Regenerist in the Sunday paper! Score! Try them all. Use what works.
50's. Okay, someone will tell you soon, "You look great FOR YOUR AGE." Breathe. The options are (1) pretend the remark was directed at someone else, (2) volunteer an eye doctor recommendation, and/or (3) channel those raging hormones for once and flatten the idiot. Whew - did I just type that? In any case, continue to try new products. An eye cream? Probably. And SPF 2000 in your moisturizers. Okay, my dermatologist, age twelve, says SPF 30 will do. But if they start to make SPF 2000 by the time you are 50, try it, sweetie!
60's: Good news, girlfriend - you might still be alive. Even attractive. Now bring out the big guns. Are you at risk of having a VW get lost in your pores? A little Preparation H. All the beauty queens use it. Also, a really great night cream. Get creative. Consider Vaseline. And remember high school Biology? Don't you wish we could get our hands on some formaldehyde? It is, however, a carcinogen, and Amazon doesn't carry it. Bummer.
70's - 90's: Okay, this is hypothetical territory. Never fear - my research has begun.
With the money to be made on Boomers, we can safely assume that skincare will continue to advance. Ditto the surgical options. So here is the plan: Try every new cream, lotion, potion and compound. If it works for you (and you can remember to use it - heh-heh), go for it.
BUT no surgery (raise your right hand, girls!). Have you ever repainted a bathroom, only to realize the vanity and floor look dated? Same risk with a little nip and tuck! Let the celebrities who have gone this route serve as a lesson to you.
Frankly, my time in Southern California probably scarred me (no pun intended). Costco lines replete with ladies with perky "girls" or eyes that no longer shut. Depends or Efferdent in their carts! Need I say more?
Exception: if you are completely certain that you can limit surgery to a single procedure (as in, "it's elective surgery and it will take a reverse mortgage for anything more"), then I sincerely hope you are thrilled with your new look. But you might put title to your primary residence out of your reach, just in case.
As for me, in lieu of foundation (or under it), my money is on spackle! No more wrinkles! I have heard that Home Depot will match your skin tone if you find a clerk with a name like Doris or Cleta.
100 and beyond. Just think - if you can fog a mirror, everyone will tell you how great you look!! And you will! Enjoy every minute!
A final word: If we are blessed enough to live to a ripe old age, our skin will age. Nobody is singled out for it. Our friends who left this world too soon would be delighted to age with us.
So let's enjoy the face we have today and every tomorrow. (If God gives us ten more years, we will wish for today's face anyway.)
And I pray for an absolute bonfire of birthday candles - for all of us.